First time buyer. Short list advice

Been doing a bit of looking at versatile kayak for mostly recreational use. I live a few hours from the coast; so there is always the option to take it on the ocean as well. From what I’ve seen this is my “short list:” Jackson Bite, Crescent Lite Tackle, Vibe Yellowfin 120 or 130T, Feelfree Moken 12.5. Not opposed to other suggestions, but with those some reasoning as well.

Thanks for the input!

What do you like about these boats, why / criteria on short list? Price, features, etc? There are dozens of similar boats

What coast are you within reach of, something like the Gulf or more like the Outer Banks? It might help people who know the area point you towards good outfitters to check with. Kayak shops are going to be more open in some areas soon.

It appears you are looking at sit on tops, if anything a bit fishing oriented. Do I have this right? That is immediately a better idea than a sit inside rec boat for occasional salt water use. It is also outside of boats I know so my only help is this question. If fishing is a strong specialty interest on your part you may want to check under that area too.

Outer Banks. Fishing isn’t a strong interest; however, I’d like the flexibility to be able to; versatility is my main objective. Not opposed to a sit-in yak; yet, just found the sit-on type to have more options that I may use.

Do you have any preference on my short list or any other recommendations?

Features/Price. I’m looking for a yak under/around $1000; obviously we all want the best of both worlds. Furthermore; something that is easy to paddle and control.
It will mostly be used for daily recreational use. May take a camping trip with it, can take to the NC coast, but mostly lakes/rivers.

I don’t know enough about SOTs to pick a winner. But this will help others who do,

I have owned 4 WS Tarpons, so that’s my recommendation. There are other great SOT out there. I have never heard of your choices.
The coast of NC can go from millpond calm to wicked in a blink. It is called the Graveyard of the Atlantic for a reason.
My second Tarpon , and the subsequent ones, handled wicked very well.
Why 4? The plus one or next one rule is always in play. My first was used.

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Hook, Line, and Paddle in Wilmington, and Pogie’s in Swansboro, seem like they deal in the types of kayaks you’re attracted to. If you want to try some different options first, you could try a few rentals from at Carolina Beach State Park or Hammocks Beach State Park.

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